Oh boy! Where do I even begin?
I felt like we were back at square one again because I really didn't know much about MiniMed vs. Animas. All I really knew was what I read and the reviews that you all gave me. I went into the class with a very open mind and I had no clue which pump we'd end up really looking at.
As we got off the elevator, the MiniMed pump rep snagged us and began his "spill" about the pump and all it's perks. I sorta felt like we were shopping for a new car and he was the salesman! There was another family there with us and he went on and on about how the pump works. About half way through, he asked if we had any questions. Ummm....wrong question! LOL! I gave him a run for his money and blasted him with all the questions I had. Kacey had a MiniMed pump in her hand but she didn't have a smile on her face. My first question to the MiniMed rep was....Is it true, since it's what I hear, the MiniMed CGM sites are MUCH more painful than the Dexcom sites? He gave me a bit of a puzzled look and I explained that we were already pumpers and we were choosing our next pump but the CGM was something we really wanted with as little pain as possible. He then went on to tell us how it worked. Thats NOT what I asked! I asked if it was painful? So then he explained how it was inserted. NO! Thats NOT what I asked! He finally said, "What have your Mom bloggers said about it?" (Yep, told him I'd talked to all of you about it!) Again I said, "I heard it was painful and uncomfortable." He then replied, "Well it's a larger needle than your infusion set." Kacey handed the pump back and looked at me with the "Mom Im ready to go" look. We breezed right by the OmniPod rep since she wasn't interested at all. (I will come back to this later on) Around the corner stood...Animas! I've been tossing back and forth over this and it didn't take long to settle myself when I saw the smile come across Kacey's face. It was the smile I saw when she first held a Cozmo pump. We were tickled to see Kacey's very first CDE, Nurse A. She was there the night Kacey was diagnosed, she was there the horrible morning after, she was there when we chose "Herbie" and now here she was again...only this time she was not there as a CDE. She is now a rep for Animas! This settled my nerves as well. She was helping another family so we started talking with the other rep, who happened to have one fantastic personality! I stood there watching Kacey press the buttons as she showed her how to bolus and my heart was swelling. I listened as Kacey asked questions. She told the rep about her favorite features and of course, I voiced mine. Kacey was fascinated with the remote and the color, VERY easy to read and navigate screen on the pump. After we talked to the reps, we went into another room for the class. Since we're pump upgrades, we didn't have to sit through the class with all the other new pumpers. We were in a class with another family that were also Cozmo users and having the same issues that we are. Their daughter has been on a Cozmo for 6 years and they were looking at Animas and Omnipod. After a very informal question and answer session, we were given the chance to try on a pod if we wanted or we could try a new infusion set. The other little girl was interested in the Omnipod so she went first and we all watched as the pod was filled and applied. The girl did not realize that she was going to actually get stuck so it was quite a shock when the CDE said, "Here it comes" and we all heard a "shunk" sound. The girls eyes got as big as quarters as she realized she got stuck and she immediately tried to hold back tears as she walked back to her chair in front of Kacey. It was only a few minutes before she began to cry...and then I looked over to see Kacey in full blown tears!!! I hugged her and asked her why in the world she was crying? She continued to cry harder as she said, "Cuz I know her pain". Well then the little girls Mom and I both welled up with tears because we all felt it! I then went on to ask more questions about the Omnipod because I really wasn't that familiar with it but I didn't want to completely rule it out, even though Kacey already had. Over a 3 day period, Kacey takes in about 240-250 units so this would mean we'd be changing the pod every 2 days instead of every 3. Then...one thing that I didn't realize was...once the insulin is in the pod, there is no extracting it. So if you bump the pod and it comes loose and you have to take it off, then you lose that insulin! Ummm...for us....we're using just about 3 vials a month and if we're making those sorts of boo-boo's then we're going to run short on insulin and that completely scares the crap out of me! Then, the thought of the PDA being something she has to carry around unattached and the thought of it being left somewhere and no way to give a bolus other than the PDA. We just didn't think the Omnipod was something that was right for us right now. Yep, Kacey already knew that but I wanted to give it a chance! I know the Omnipod has been wonderful for many of you and it's so nice to love your pump :) (please dont send over any hate comments...LOL!) So then, my other questions were directed for CGM's. I wanted to hear about all the differences in the MM vs. Dex....and I got them! I got to see that freakin HUGE needle/cannula from the MiniMed CGM (yowserssss! bless those of you that can wear it comfortably!) but then I got what I asked for...pros and cons of each one. The CDE had to be neutral since it was ultimately our decision as to which one was being chosen and she didn't want to sway us in any way. So that was nice but there are times when you do want some validation that you're making the right choice...even though there really isn't a right or wrong choice with these pumps. It's all about preference and what works for you or your child. So.......what did I do? I went back to Nurse A, of course! I knew she could give me the feedback I was looking for :) and she did! Kacey pressed more buttons and played with the Ping remote while I asked more questions about Dexcom. While we were in the other room, I did learn something that I did NOT know about CGM's. For those of you using the Dexcom, did you know that it's not pediatric approved and it's not accurate when taking acetaphetamine? This was new for me! So the CDE was telling us that our Endo office does not have a Dexcom rep because they are a pediatric Endo office and it is not something approved for pediatrics....BUT it is something we can choose if we want it but she wanted us to understand that if we needed help with it then they could only give us the 1-800 number to refer to since they wouldn't have anyone there to help. WOW! OK...the CDE had told us she had worn both sensors before and she did find the MM sensor to be a bit uncomfortable but then we also had to realize that the Dex sensor is wire thin and we had to ask ourselves what would we do if that thin wire sensor broke off in her skin? Yikes! Talk about not wanting a CGM...haha! So then I talked with Nurse A some more about the whole issue with medication and she asked me, "Would you check Kacey's sugar more when shes sick and has a fever?" Ummmm, yep! "OK, then you don't need that Dex sensor to be accurate, right?" Ahhhh, right! I also found out....50% of MM users that used the MM CGM ended up switching to a Dex :) So again, it's all in what you want. I felt like I learned so much and I asked so many more questions than I did the first time we went to class. It felt great!
Sooooo....what did Kacey choose?
Kacey chose the pink Animas ping with a pink & purple camo case and a Dexcom CGM.
I have to fill out all of the paperwork and fax it in on Monday. I'm not sure what our out of pocket expense is going to be yet but we were told that Animas would give us a trade in allowance if we traded her Cozmo. As soon as she heard that, she broke down! "Mommy, PLEASE don't make me give my Cozmo to them!" Ughhhhhhh! We went through enough trauma when we had to send "Herbie" back so I don't think we are going to trade in "Goober". I will just let her keep it as a spare since she will still be able to use the Comfort Short sites with the Animas pump (another reason we liked it!) Kacey is dead set against using any of the automatic inserter things. We use the manual insert ones and thats what she is comfortable with....and thats fine...but I'm glad we will have the option of the automatic ones because I'm guessing within the next year she will want to do a site on her own. But for now, we're sticking with what works for us! :)
So to all of you that gave me all the wonderful info on both pumps....THANK YOU! I went into the class with the knowledge that you all had given me and I was able to say, "Well my D-Mom friends said....." and that was some nice back up! :)
Tomorrow is another BIG day for us! We go to meet the diabetic alert dogs and see how they work. We're very excited! I promise to get some pics :) I took my camera to pump class with the intentions of getting pics and I ended up so involved with questions and pushing buttons that I forgot to get a few pics. So I will be sure to capture some pics and hopefully some video :) It's going to be a neat experience and I'm thrilled to get the ball rolling on this!